Earlier this summer came the news that filmmaker Mike Flanagan would step back into the world of Stephen King for a third time and would write and direct an adaptation of his 2014 novel Revival. The director of Gerald's Game and Doctor Sleep is set to re-team with his producer Trevor Macy on the film and in a new interview Flanagan delivered a major update on the movie's progress. Speaking on the latest episode of The Kingcast, Flanagan revealed that the first draft of the screenplay for the movie is complete and that Stephen King himself "loves it."
"What I love about it is it's a return to cosmic horror which I think is so fun," Flanagan said. "It is relentlessly dark and cynical and I'm enjoying the hell out of that. I think a lot of King's work is like this too, there's a safety in the sentimental approach to a lot of those stories and this is just bleak and mean and I like it for that. I haven't gotten to end a movie that way since, geez, Absentia maybe? Maybe Ouija?"
Flanagan went on to reveal that he reads all the reviews of his movies and shows after they're released and has noticed a trend where critics make a note of his endings being "sentimental" or "emotional," adding: "This one was a really fun piece of material for me because I get to be like 'Oh you want a dark ending? Cool, get ready.'"
The writer/director also spoke vaguely about adapting the ending of this particular novel from King, a grim and gnarly conclusion. Flanagan noted that he's not entirely sure how the production company, Intrepid Pictures in this case, will react to the film's script or perhaps ask that it be made happier/nicer; however, this is a worry he has every time. In this case though he has an ace up his sleeve, Uncle Steve himself.
"I've gotten pretty good about digging my heels in on stuff like that," he concluded. "It's a lot easier to do, I can talk a big game when I've got Stephen King in my corner advocating for the same ending."
Even in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and how it has shut down sets around the world, Flanagan already has a busy schedule ahead. The second season of The Haunting of Hill House is still chugging along for Netflix along with a recently announced adaptation of the Christopher Pike book The Midnight Club and an original series titled Midnight Mass, all of which are in development for the streaming service.